early 12c., "to strive toward, devote oneself to, cultivate" (translating Latin occupatur), from Old French estudiier "to study, apply oneself, show zeal for; examine" (13c., Modern French étudier), from Medieval Latin studiare, from Latin studium "study, application," originally "eagerness," from studere "to be diligent," from PIE *(s)teu- (1) "to push, stick, knock, beat" (see steep (adj.)). The notion appears to be "pressing forward, thrusting toward," hence "strive after."
Martha swanc and becarcade to geforðigene þan Hælende and his þeowen þa lichamlice behefðen. Seo studdede emb þa uterlice þing. [Homily for the Feast of the Virgin Mary, c.1125]
From c. 1300 as "apply oneself to the acquisition of learning, pursue a formal course of study," also "read a book or writings intently or meditatively." From mid-14c. as "reflect, muse, think, ponder." Meaning "regard attentively" is from 1660s. Related: Studied; studying.
c. 1300, "application of the mind to the acquisition of knowledge, intensive reading and contemplation of a book, writings, etc.," from Old French estudie "care, attention, skill, thought; study, school" (Modern French étude), from Latin studium "study, application" (see study (v.)). Also from c. 1300 as "a state of deep thought or contemplation; a state of mental perplexity, doubt, anxiety; state of amazement or wonder." From mid-14c. as "careful examination, scrutiny." Sense of "room furnished with books" is from late 14c. Meaning "a subject of study" is from late 15c. Study hall is attested from 1891, originally a large common room in a college.